Château Bellegrave, grand vin Bordeaux

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2015

Nature is generous!

Developments during the growing season (bud break, flowering, and ripening) were particularly quick and even thanks to very advantageous weather, especially during flowering. Fruit set went very well, resulting in yields that were bountiful in a way we had not seen for a decade. We must acknowledge that nature was really very kind and generous to us.

There was some water stress in summer, but not too much.

September weather was perfect – not overly hot, but with beautiful sunshine followed by cool nights in the latter part of the month. Ripening was spread out over a long period, which is generally the key to a great vintage!

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2015

Nature is generous!

Developments during the growing season (bud break, flowering, and ripening) were particularly quick and even thanks to very advantageous weather, especially during flowering. Fruit set went very well, resulting in yields that were bountiful in a way we had not seen for a decade. We must acknowledge that nature was really very kind and generous to us.

There was some water stress in summer, but not too much.

September weather was perfect – not overly hot, but with beautiful sunshine followed by cool nights in the latter part of the month. Ripening was spread out over a long period, which is generally the key to a great vintage!

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2014

A miracle vintage!

After a wet, mild winter, weather in the spring of 2014 was similar to that of the previous year. However, summer weather was poor: cool, with regular showers. To compensate for these difficult conditions, we paid extra special attention to the state of the leaf canopy, which is essential for good ripening. Thanks to the absence of rain, temperatures close to 30°C, and wonderful sunshine, the month of September was simply incredible. This superb weather brought about the necessary water stress for good ripening. The thermal amplitude between cool night-time temperatures and warm daytime ones was conducive to excellent colour.

«The quality of the leaf canopy and the perfect weather during the last five weeks of the growing season saved the vintage. The grapes had excellent natural concentration with a fine balance between sugar and acidity. The wines are very fruity, balanced, deeply coloured, and have very high-quality tannin»

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2013

A vintage calling for great technical expertise!

One of the main characteristics of the 2013 vintage was late flowering during cold, wet weather that led to severe coulure in Merlot. Green pruning needed to be extremely meticulous and the grapes had to be picked very quickly. Precision winemaking was conducive to deeply-coloured, fruity wines despite the difficult weather conditions.

«Our responsiveness during the harvest, coupled with rigorous sorting during blending enabled us to obtain a very fruity, attractive wine. The Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, which constitute the majority at the estate, were ripe and with sufficient structure to provide great balance to the wine.»

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2012

The grapes are handled with the greatest of care!

The beginning of the 2012 growing season was quite challenging, but this was compensated by months of August and September that were hot and dry – ideal for ripening.

Despite the late harvest and low yields, we made sure to do our utmost to cope with the uneven quality in certain plots by carefully planning the picking order, picking in several passes, and bleeding wine off from fermentation vats.

These operations, as well as careful temperature control and pumping over during fermentation, enabled the various lots to maintain their full aromatic potential and each grape variety to express itself. The Merlot wines were deeply-coloured and round with beautiful ripe fruit aromas. The Cabernet Sauvignon wines were concentrated with quality tannin. The final blend is powerful (but not exuberant) and well-balanced, with good ageing potential.

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2011

A very early vintage !

Apart from a cold, snowy spell in December 2010, the winter was mild and dry.
The key characteristic of the growing season was the absence of spring, as winter was followed directly by summer, with extraordinarily warm weather in April and May that accelerated the vines' vegetative growth, resulting in a particularly early bud-break and early, rapid flowering. The water deficit remained severe up until mid-July, when véraison, or colour change, started.
There was regular rainfall from then until September, followed by abnormally hot, sunny weather for the season, leading to difficult conditions that were particularly favourable to complete ripening of the Cabernet Sauvignon.
However, Cabernet Sauvignon, the dominant grape variety on our estate, produced very low yields.
We paid special attention not to extract too much tannin during fermentation, in order to ensure that our wines reflected the true character of our appellation. As a result, our wines are very fruity with very voluptuous tannins, which are likely to be lovely to drink when young. A real winemaker's vintage…

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2010

Another outstanding vintage!

Who would have believed it possible after a 2009 vintage praised to the skies?
The 2010 growing season started out very well, without the threat of vine diseases, which meant that little spraying was necessary. Although flowering in Merlot vines was upset by cold, wet weather that led to low yields, the dry, very sunny weather that followed – but without a heat wave – led to quick véraison (change of colour of the grape berries) and the onset of ripening. Limited rainfall in early September, coupled with continued sunshine and high daytime temperatures, were conducive to perfect ripening of the grape skins and seeds. The juice was highly concentrated thanks to the small size of the berries.
The wines show considerable aromatic complexity. They are also powerful with a velvety texture. Although alcohol levels were very high, this was balanced by greater acidity than in 2009, which bodes well for excellent ageing potential…

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2009

Like 2005, the 2009 vintage benefited from early, even flowering and fruit set (despite a wet spring), as well as early véraison (colour change) and optimum ripening due to hot, dry weather in August and September. Thanks to exceptionally dry conditions in September and October, accompanied by cool night-time temperatures, we can objectively say that we able to undertake a “dream harvest” in late September. All of these factors, which rarely occur simultaneously, have probably produced one of the greatest vintages Bordeaux has ever seen !!

“For us, this vintage is in line with 2007 and 2008. The beginning of the growing season was especially challenging because of the risk of vine diseases. We needed to be vigilant and present in the vineyard at all times. However, nature ended up by spoiling us... Both of our estates were spared by the hail that struck certain neighbouring appellations and we also escaped torrential showers that occurred elsewhere at crucial stages during the ripening period.
The weather forecast was optimistic and reassuring for weeks on end, so we were able to calmly wait for optimum maturity. The grapes were picked at peak ripeness without any need to hurry. These outstanding conditions were conducive to wines with ideal richness and perfect balance! The alcoholic degree may have been high, but this was compensated by a fine tannic structure and excellent acidity! Each and every lot had the characteristics of a great year… The en primeur tastings confirmed that our wines from this vintage are truly outstanding!”

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2008

The 2008 growing season and the ripening of the grapes that year were confronted with fairly capricious weather conditions: strong showers alternating with bright sunshine, cold spells, and hot periods! This sort of weather is unfortunately conducive to vine diseases…

However, starting in mid-September, fine weather, with cool nocturnal temperatures accompanied by a breeze, eliminated the risk of disease and provided the grapes with enough sunlight for good ripening. This was nevertheless very slow, and the first plots of Merlot were harvested on the 30th of September, and first Cabernet Sauvignon grapes on the 8th of October.

2008 will thus be remembered as a difficult and late-maturing vintage saved by a sunny autumn as well as the many efforts in the vineyard to compensate for the challenging weather.

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2007

In 2007, February was unusually warm and April extremely hot and sunny, triggering an extraordinarily early start to the growing season (almost 3 weeks). This effect was attenuated by very wet weather in May and a significant lack of sunshine throughout the summer.

Thanks to the anticyclone that settled in after August 30th, the grapes were able to reach technological, phenolic, and aromatic ripeness. The Indian summer was outstanding, comparable to 2002, making it possible to pick each plot and grape variety at peak ripeness.
The Merlot is very rich, with superb aromatic complexity and the Cabernet Sauvignon, a later-ripening grape variety, benefitted fully from the long period of fine autumn weather to ripen and develop their full color at their own pace.

Extra work in the vineyard (frequent spraying and thinning operations) was expensive, but necessary to cope with this year's demanding weather conditions.

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2006

The relatively wet winter in 2006 replenished the water reserves depleted by drought in recent years. Then, the relatively dry spring enabled the vines to flower rapidly, under good conditions: in late May for the Merlot and early June for the Cabernets.

Very hot July weather accelerated the vegetative cycle, stopping vine growth and triggering early color change. The fine promise of another outstanding vintage was spoiled by poor weather in August (cool temperatures and relatively little sunshine).

However, the 2006 vintage still turned out very well, as timely leaf-and bunch-thinning enabled all the grape varieties to ripen very nicely. The sugar and phenolic levels were particularly high, combined with fairly low acidity and unusually aromatic fruit.

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Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2005

Le millésime 2005 laissera le souvenir d'un millésime de très grande qualité, avec un hiver très sec, un printemps et un été chauds, ensoleillés mais sans canicule.

Ce climat a permis d'attendre la maturité phénolique optimale, de vendanger sans hâte, des raisins particulièrement sucrés, suffisamment acides, fruités et très colorés ; les vendanges ayant débuté le 26 septembre pour les Merlots et le 30 septembre pour les Cabernets.

Le point décevant concerne les faibles rendements, seulement 39 hectolitres / ha.

Les vins produits sont tanniques, souples, fruités et très bien équilibré malgré des degrés alcooliques relativement élevés... Toutes les conditions étaient réunies pour produire un millésime exceptionnel.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2004

Dès la floraison, la surprise est venue de la fertilité des bourgeons et de la taille des grappes, comme si la vigne avait accumulé des réserves les deux années précédentes facilitant le développement de tous les raisins. Ainsi, grâce à un éclaircissage assez sévère, les rendements ont pu être maîtrisés.

Le millésime 2004 est assez classique avec des températures estivales moyennes et une bonne insolation, un mois de septembre agréable, avec des nuits fraîches empêchant le développement de la pourriture.

Nous avons ainsi pu attendre la maturité optimale pour débuter les vendanges (30 septembre pour les Merlots, 8 octobre pour les Cabernets). Les fermentations ont été rapides et nous avons particulièrement veillé à ne pas trop extraire car les tanins étaient présents en quantité dans le raisin.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2003

L’année 2003 restera dans les mémoires comme celle de l'été caniculaire. Ce millésime se caractérise par sa précocité et un volume de récolte assez faible (42 hectolitres / ha). En effet, les conditions climatiques particulièrement favorables tout au long du cycle végétatif expliquent pour une grande part la précocité de 2003. Le choix de la date des vendanges fut particulièrement délicat, nécessitant la recherche d'un compromis entre la teneur élevée en sucre et l'acidité très basse.

Les vinifications 2003 ont été marquées par une vendange arrivant au cuvier à température assez élevée, des moûts très riches en sucre et des acidités assez faibles mais suffisantes. Les quelques pluies de début septembre ont fait craindre un développement de la pourriture, mais l'établissement par la suite d’un temps chaud et sec a fait disparaitre toute inquiétude et les raisins récoltés sont restés dans un état sanitaire excellent.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2002

Le cycle végétatif démarre avec un temps sec et des températures assez douces. Cependant, le temps froid et humide s'installe pendant la floraison, bloquant ainsi le processus et conduisant à une hétérogénéité de la récolte.

Les conditions climatiques se sont avérées déplorables tout au long de la campagne. Le mois de Septembre sec et ensoleillé permet heureusement de sauver ce millésime difficile. Les vendanges tardives se déroulent sous le soleil , avec un excellent état sanitaire, des moûts d'une richesse rarement atteinte mais avec des rendements très faibles.

D'un rouge profond, ce vin est dense et présente des arômes de fruits rouges bien murs. Déjà très agréable, les Sieurs de Bellegrave sont à consommer dans les 5 à 6 ans.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2001

L’hiver est doux et humide. Grâce au temps chaud et sec des mois de mai et juin, la floraison se déroule d'une manière homogène et rapide. Les effeuillages et vendanges vertes réalisés cette année permettent d'attendre la maturité optimale et de commencer les vendanges début octobre.

D’une belle robe, ce vin est harmonieux et bien équilibré, fruité, frais et offre des notes boisées élégantes. A consommer d'ici 2007.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
2000

Après un hiver assez froid, le printemps s'est avéré très humide et frais, ralentissant le développement de la vigne. Pour la première année, les effeuillages entièrement manuels ont été réalisés sur la totalité de la propriété.

Les vendanges se sont déroulées avec des conditions climatiques exceptionnelles, nous permettant d'obtenir des vins très colorés ainsi qu'une structure tannique complexe et puissante.

D'une belle couleur profonde aux reflets grenats, ce vin développe de délicates notes boisées et fruitées. Les tanins puissants et élégants devraient lui permettre d'etre servi dans les cinq ans sur de l'agneau ou du gibier.

Les Sieurs
de Bellegrave
1999

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de Bellegrave
2009

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de Bellegrave
2008

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de Bellegrave
2007

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de Bellegrave
2006

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de Bellegrave
2005

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de Bellegrave
2004

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de Bellegrave
2003

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de Bellegrave
2002

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de Bellegrave
2001

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de Bellegrave
2000

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de Bellegrave
1999

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